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Archive for ‘Technology’

Google Squared Launches

The semantic web is coming, the semantic web is coming!

Simon Chester alerted us a while ago to Google Lab’s new project: Stub Posting on Google Squared. It has now launched: Simon C asked in his post what Slaw readers might make of this, and I’d like to repeat his question now that you can take it out for a spin and kick its tires. I can see how the basic organization into fundamental facets that shift depending on the nature of your search terms would be useful to school students; but I’m not sure whether it . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Technology, Technology: Internet

Open Medicine Wiki

Open Medicine, the Canadian, open-access, peer-reviewed medical journal that launched two years ago as a consequence of some concerns about the independence of medical publishing, has pushed the boundaries yet again. They’ve placed a published article on a wiki and have invited readers to edit the piece in order to improve it. As their blog says simply:

This project explores the use of a wiki as an online collaborative tool for improving and updating peer-reviewed systematic reviews.

The article in question is “Asynchronous telehealth: a scoping review of analytic studies,” by Amol Deshpande, Shariq Khoja, Julio Lorca, Ann McKibbon, Carlos . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Information Management, Legal Information: Publishing, Miscellaneous, Technology

A Highway Code for Data Handling

There’s much practical advice in the British Computing Society and the Information Security Awareness Forum’s new publication Personal Data Guardianship Code released today.

If you don’t think there’s a need, a recent 2009 Data Breach Investigations Report from IT provider Verizon Business suggested that 285 million records were compromised in 2008.

Of course, the lawyers got to it: “This code is not intended to be legal advice and where the reader is unsure about any aspect of the Data Protection Act or other Acts and regulations they should seek legal advice or visit the Information Commissioner’s web site.”

The . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Information Management, Substantive Law, Technology

Microsoft’s Bing Goes Live

Microsoft’s new search engine, Bing, went live last night. I haven’t had a chance to run any tests comparing it to Google, but a simple search or two suggests that it will likely produce comparable results.

I’m certainly pleased that it knows that a search for “slaw” should cause our site to rise to the top of the results pack:

If you hover your cursor over a search result, a graphic appears to the right, and hovering over that brings up a popup with text from a (recent? latest indexed?) sample page — but not necessarily, it would seem, . . . [more]

Posted in: Technology

Twittering Your Corporate Securities Information

The desire of publicly-listed corporations to use current communications in fulfilling their duty to disclose material information about their activities can run into the technical limits of (some of) the new media.

There’s an article [PDF] by an American law firm on the topic – 8 pages in all.

An amusing example from the article: a corporate blogger was tweeting from a corporate phone conference, and was recalled to order about the limits to discussions of corporate earnings etc. So the next time it happened, he sent out FOUR separate tweets with disclaimers applicable to the same message! (One asks . . . [more]

Posted in: Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Substantive Law, Technology

Is Your Firm on Wikipedia?

Rupert White of the U.K. Law Society’s Gazette has a couple of articles on law firms’ use of Wikipedia: “Top 50 firms that get Wikipedia – and those that don’t” and “Why the world’s favourite encyclopedia matters.” His basic position is that a law firm should have a page on Wikipedia and should groom it regularly to make certain it’s accurate, full (definitely not “fulsome,” as he has it!) and up-to-date.

I’m less convinced that a Wikipedia page is a necessity. After all, if your firm comes up top in a Google search for key components . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Publishing, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Marketing, Technology

Drive-by Praise

No one else is doing it (perhaps because they have not made it home yet), so I’m going to do a drive-by post to praise Slaw for winning the 2009 Hugh Lawford Award for Excellence in Legal Publishing. I’m going to try not to hurt my arm, but this is significant. From

This award was initiated as a means of acknowledging the work that is done by publishers to provide the Canadian legal profession with high quality materials for use in understanding and researching the law. It is hoped that this award serves both as a means to honour

. . . [more]
Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Libraries & Research, Legal Information: Publishing, Technology: Internet

Twitter, E-Discovery and Decontextualization

There’s a piece by Debra Logan on the Gartner Blog Network, “Twitter and e-Discovery,” that goes over some fairly straightforward stuff about e-discovery and social media. What struck me as interesting was an observation at the end of the piece, pointing out that because of the briefness of a tweet, it is more likely decontextualized than are other discoverable utterances (doodles on pads at meetings?), at least when it’s looked at outside the flow it first appeared in. It’s context that gives or controls meaning, and the briefer the utterance the less each word is shaped by neighbouring . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information: Information Management, Practice of Law, Technology

Kennedy on Tech Trends for 2009

Take the opportunity to read Dennis Kennedy’s May piece in the ABA’s Law Practice Today, Legal Technology Trends for 2009, this year’s version of his annual predictions and advice. I’m stealing none of his thunder if I tell you that his eight trends are:

  1. Technology budgets get decimated
  2. Making do with what you have or doing more with less
  3. The mobile phone as platform
  4. Looking to the cloud
  5. Using tech to get the word out and the money in
  6. Focus on client-focused technology
  7. E-Discovery in still waters
  8. The perfect storm for collaboration

For one thing you’re going to want . . . [more]

Posted in: Education & Training: CLE/PD, Legal Information: Information Management, Practice of Law, Practice of Law: Marketing, Practice of Law: Practice Management, Technology

Times Wire

News junkies rejoice! Yet another way to get up-to-the-minute reports on what’s happening: the New York Times now offers its content in the form of Times Wire, a kind of “river of news” web-based flow that gives you headlines, the first line or two of the story, and a block of photos with popup text for those who like things pictorial. You’re able to fashion your own flow, to some extent (no tick box for law — why is that?), choose the business & technology tab, or elect to drink from the fire hose of “all news.”

There’s an . . . [more]

Posted in: Legal Information, Legal Information: Publishing, Technology

The Canadian Anti-Spam Bill

The Electronic Commerce Protection Act, Bill C-27, has passed second reading in Parliament and will go to committee for review.

Views seem to differ on parts of the bill, while other parts are generally accepted.

One of the areas of contention deals with the degree of consent required to send someone an email. The Bill has an ‘opt in’ system, by which the sender needs the express or implied consent of the addressee to send a message. An existing business relationship may imply consent.

However, some people say that the Bill is so broadly drafted that it would prohibit . . . [more]

Posted in: Administration of Slaw, Legal Information, Substantive Law, Substantive Law: Legislation, Technology, ulc_ecomm_list